View Full Version : Western Hair with a Cowboy Hat

May. 24, 2012, 12:19 PM
How do you achieve the perfect Western Hair look? I ride english so I know all about "Hunter Hair," but I cannot seem to achieve perfect Western Hair...

Tips please! Especially from people with long hair, as my hair comes down to the middle of my back.

May. 24, 2012, 12:37 PM
Rod's has those cute clip on hairnet/bun covers with crystals in all different colors. I braid my hair, roll it into a low bun, and clip one of those over it, then pin my bangs back with bobby pins, and put on my hat.

I was always told that you had to have your hair braided or in a bun for Western, but I'm drawing a blank as to what people actually did at my first (and so far only) western show.

May. 24, 2012, 01:36 PM
With long hair, you want to either braid or bun so you don't have fly-aways all over the place, splayed across your back and flopping around. If your hair goes to mid-back, I would suggest a bun, because a braid that long will also flop around.

When my hair was short, like to my jawline, I just put a hat on. It was too short to pull back or put in a bun, and short enough that it still looked neat.

As soon as I could get it into a low ponytail, I just pony-tailed it (it was still too short to flop around).

As soon as it was long enough to braid/bun, I braided it and used a clip/net like this: http://www.rods.com/Crystal-Hair-Bow-with-Net,7255.html
You spin up your bun, and tuck it into the net below the clip.

May. 24, 2012, 01:38 PM
And hairspray is your friend...to prevent those fly-aways that always seem to escape the braid and stick out by your ears...spray those suckers and stick to your head! Done! You can also use hair gel before braiding, that helps keep things in place.

May. 24, 2012, 01:49 PM
Please check out the current magazines (QH Journal, The Way To Go, Equine Chronicle, Go Horse Show) and see what people in the ring are doing. Show bows are way outdated. I have just past shoulder length hair and when I was showing HMS, I put half of it in a pony tail on the top of my head and the rest in a small bun with hairnets and bobby pins at the nape of my neck. More pines and hair spray controlled the flyaways.

GoHorseShow online mag: http://www.mydigitalpublication.com/publication/?i=109740 View page #90/91 - beautiful bun pictured in that ad.

I ride reining now, so just a simply pony tail works for me.

May. 24, 2012, 02:01 PM
GoHorseShow online mag: http://www.mydigitalpublication.com/...tion/?i=109740 View page #90/91 - beautiful bun pictured in that ad.

That's an awesome bun...but I'm highly doubting I could make it look that good on my own!

May. 24, 2012, 02:10 PM
Western show hair isn't hard. But no show bows, please. Just a standard bun, a hairnet, and LOTS of hairspray.

Put you hair in a low ponytail, at the nape of your neck; secure with band. Start twisting the hair very tightly, letting it coil around the band. When you get to the end, kind of nestle it into the bun, along the outer edge. Secure bun with about a million bobby pins. Wrap a hairnet around the bun several times, securing with bobby pins if necessary, and spray the crap out of the whole thing with a super-hold hairspray. Voila!


May. 24, 2012, 02:15 PM
I don't like the bows but I think these bun nets are adorable:


May. 24, 2012, 02:31 PM
Just braid it and bun it or net it and put it under your hat. I always just pony tailed mine and then a short ribbon to match the saddle pad. Biggest thing I can recommend is making sure your hat fits you and having a hat shaper correctly shape your hat for your profile.

red mares
May. 24, 2012, 02:42 PM
scunci bun magic


I used this for years under a hard hat, ball cap and a with a derby. If you put a band around when you're done, the hair isn't going anywhere. I liked it because it made a low bun. I put a net over it when I showed.

May. 24, 2012, 06:16 PM
Ditto the correctly shaped hat part.

Hair in a ponytail is appropriate for some events, but if you're showing in horsemanship, you pretty much need to have it in a bun to minimize any distracting movement.:)

May. 24, 2012, 06:44 PM
My buddy did his DD's very thick shoulder blade length hair by braiding it and then pulling the braid back under and feeding it up to the top of her head where he secured it with those flat clips. It had no bun but the effect was very neat and tidy, looked very french braid like.

May. 24, 2012, 10:42 PM
I do reining and just pull my shoulder length hair into a low ponytail. I pin the front on top of my head with clippy barrettes to prevent flyaways. A well shaped, in-style hat, is most important.

May. 24, 2012, 11:17 PM
As others have said, it's event specific. For the more "casual" classes, western riding, trail, reining, speed classes, --a ponytail is okay. But for pleasure, horsemanship, showmanship, a tidy bun (no show bows) or all up under your hat is what you want.

My hair's short, so I just spray the heck out of it and tuck it behind my ears.

The single most important thing you'll wear is your hat. Make sure it's shaped in a current style and is clean.

May. 24, 2012, 11:23 PM
It really depends on what events you are showing in and on what circuit. The hair bows/jeweled heavy nets are definitely not in style, as already mentioned by Bugsynskeeter, but if you really love them you could probably get away with them on a very small local circuit. For anything bigger like large open circuit, AQHA, etc. stick with a nice neat bun with no fly-aways for everything except western pleasure where you can get away with a neat pony tail as long as your horse is SMOOTH. I think it actually helps my daughter place higher in her pleasure classes because her very long ponytail remains pretty much motionless through the class.

For medium length hair it is easiest to just bring the ponytail up under your hat and bobby pin it in place. As already stated, hairspray is your friend - more is definitely better. We race to the showers at the end of the day to wash it all out.

May. 24, 2012, 11:24 PM
I've seen plenty of ponytails in the pleasure class...even at Congress and Worlds. Buns are more common in the classes judged on the rider.

May. 25, 2012, 08:56 AM
How do you achieve the perfect Western Hair look? I ride english so I know all about "Hunter Hair," but I cannot seem to achieve perfect Western Hair...

Tips please! Especially from people with long hair, as my hair comes down to the middle of my back.

What type of shows are you going to do? When I show in Stock Horse, my hair is just left long under my cowboy hat. I did a open show last month and did the same thing. I make sure it is brushed and nice. I have never had anyone say anything. If you are doing a breed show you may want to polish up a bit.

May. 25, 2012, 10:52 AM
Claires accessories,sally,empire beauty all sell the bun donuts..
put your hair up as neatly as possible and try to control the fly aways. Clear hairnets are good too and they come in different weights/strengths.

Being neat and poilshed does count for something.. plus the loose haired people seem to look a little rough and scruffy after they warm up and get in the ring.
Make sure you have your hat shaped properly to the current style.
makeup.. don't go all kabuki. do your brows,lips and lashes, thats about all that can be seen at a distance.. save the photo makeup for when you need a close up win adver't for the Journal or some other publication.

May. 25, 2012, 11:57 PM
I have medium length hair and when I showed schooling WP, I had a ponytail with bobby pins to help hold it in place. If I had time, I put it a bun.

May. 26, 2012, 11:13 PM
Military buns look great and are actually easy to do.
Pull hair back into a low ponytail. Add elastic...a no-slip one if possible. Smooth hair against head, use some serious gel or hair wax if you want all day hair with *no* fly-aways.
Cut the toe off of a sock.
(sock size depends on hair size, LOL! If you have extra long hair, use a knee sock. If you have thinner hair/medium length then use a shorter sock, etc)
Scrunch sock up and pass ponytail through the sock. Shove scrunched sock up against head.
Split ponytail and wrap back towards head over the scrunched up sock.
Stretch an elastic over the bun/sock and double until tight.
You now have the nice perfectly round "bagel" bun but with long hairs sticking out near your head.
Hair spray the whole thing, then using bobby pins move around the bun sweeping the long hairs in a circle under the bun and securing with bobby pins.

Voila! Military bun! And it stays. It doesn't come out during physical training...it's not coming out on a horse. :winkgrin: Size of bun depends on asize of sock.

ETA: found a youtube video...much easier to watch than read my screwed up explanation, LOL!


May. 31, 2012, 02:17 PM
What we did for IHSA Western (so horsemanship) was pull hair pack into a tight, low ponytail and secure. Then we'd make the bun by coiling the ponytail around itself and secure with another hairtie or bobby pins. Then we'd take a thin hairnet (the kind that you DON'T use for hunter hair!) and put that over just the bun, securing with bobby pins sticking straight into the bun. Hairspray everything to high heaven.

Then for the hat we'd spray a little hairspray on the inside/forehead area of the brim to make it a little tacky, and put the hat on. Then bobby pin the hat into your hair. Best bobby pins had a straight edge that goes into the inner hat band, and the kinky end into your hair.

Anyone with bangs got her bangs pulled up and bobby pinned to the top of her head. Since my hair is curly I'd often straighten it the night before to make it easier to handle, or I'd use one hairnet over my head and another over the bun, but that was usually a PITA.